Starfield is a single-player science fiction role-playing game developed by Bethesda Game Studios and published by Bethesda Softworks. It was released on September 6, 2023, for Windows and Xbox Series X/S. The game takes place in a space-themed setting and features an open world in the form of an area within the Milky Way galaxy, containing both fictional and non-fictional planetary systems.
Starfield is the first new intellectual property developed by Bethesda in 25 years. It marks a return to the studio’s deep RPG roots of meaningful customization, dialogue, and choice. This has translated into Bethesda’s most elaborate character creation system yet, with dozens of traits, skills, and backgrounds to choose from. Therein lies one of its problems.
Among the myriad options for a given character’s appearance and general place in Starfield‘s world, players can also choose their avatar’s gender identity and pronouns. They can ask to be referred to as They/Them, She/Her, or He/Him. This, to many, is making the game “woke” and forcing an ideology onto gamers.
The game is being boycotted or refunded by those who feel Bethesda is trying to bring politics into Starfield, depriving them of their escapism or immersion. The problem is, everything is woke these days. So it’s no surprise that wokeness has spread to games. Almost everything in the entertainment industry comes from a group of people with a somewhat common ideological background and temperament. The real question is if it’s too woke for you to enjoy.
According to a review by CNN, Starfield is a “beautiful” game with “amazing world-building” and “fun side quests.” However, the review also mentions that some of the game’s mechanics, such as ship controls and planetary exploration, are “half-baked.”
A review by TechRadar states that Starfield is a “technically solid systems-heavy role-playing game” but “has no sense of character” and “the story lacks impact.”
Finally, a review by IGN describes Starfield as an “ambitious exploration of the galaxy” with “expansive roleplaying quests” and “respectable combat.” However, the review also mentions that the game has “too many problems that constantly popped up,” which are “forcing me to curb my excitement.”
What do you think about the Starfield “woke” controversy? Do you just ignore the pronouns and enjoy playing, or did you decide to boycott the game?